June 29, 2017 

By Shonassee Shaver 

Contributing Writer 


The 2017 BET Experience returned this summer for its festivities in the trendy downtown Los Angeles area. Held at L.A. Live, a mecca for entertainment, the annual award celebration brought out thousands of fans and celebrities. Taking place between venues such as the Staple Center and the Microsoft Theatre, June 22nd through June 25th, the larger than life musical festival offered a plethora of raw and pure talent, honoring Black culture and celebrating new and old school entertainers, activists and athletes.


Fans received the full experience at this year’s highly anticipated celebration with live and active celebrity filled basketball tournaments, Genius Talks, beauty and fashion suites, concerts and much more engagements leading up to the 2017 BET Awards.


The annual summer event presented multiple facets of entertainment from the BET Fan Fest to BETX ’17 concerts including an array of R&B and hip-hop favorites. Shows took place between Thursday and Sunday featuring Desiigner, Pusha T, De La Ghetto, Gucci Mane, Migos, Rae Sremmurd, 2 Chainz& Friends and countless others.


The BETX ‘17 held at the Staple Center, Friday, June 23rd presented by Coca-Cola, hosted memorable musical moments that were filled with a multitude of classic and new R&B, neo-soul, tribal, Caribbean, electric and hip-hop sounds. The lineup featured DJ Khaled& Friends, Bryson Tiller, JheneAiko, Jidenna, THEY., H.E.R and Khalid. 


In anticipation, people came in droves, finding their seats, while waiting to be entertained by noteworthy artists. 


The star studded performance included YoGotti, French Montana, Bell BivDeVoe, YG, 21 Savage, DJ Mustard, Kent Jones and, new artist Tee Drizzly. The team of rappers and musicians rocked the stage with DJ Khaled, who is hitting it big in the industry with collaborations from Rihanna, Quavo, Chance The Rapper, and Bryson Tiller. The “Trapsoul” artist took to the stage as well with singles “Don’t,” “Exchange,” “Sorry Not Sorry.” He performed songs from his new album, “True To Self.”


Similar to Tiller, Aiko gave audience her trademark bohemian and chill sounds with “Stranger,” “The Pressure,” “The Worst,” “Stay Ready (What a Life),” “Manic,” “Post to Be” and new song “While We’re Young.” The free-spirited singer set her performance to a backdrop paying homage to icons, John Lennon and Yoko Ono.


Newcomers, THEY.performed while the highly anticipated singer H.E.R. did a set of crowd pleasing songs, “Losing,” “Focus,” “U” and “Wait For It” (Vol. 1) and “Say It Again” (Vol. 2). Performing in her well-known mysterious and intimate vibe, the songstress covered Rihanna’s “Yeah I Said It.”


The concert continued with Jidenna who hyped up the concert with a tribal-Caribbean, up-tempo song and choreography to “Some Kind of Way.” “Best New Artist” nominee, Khalid sent the crowd into a frenzy with his double-platinum hit song, “Location.”


Keyshia Cole topped off Friday night’s concert with an intimate performance at the Novo by Microsoft Theatre, thrilling the crowd with a catalogue of her music. However, before her gig, she kept eager fans waiting for her performance. In her absence, DJ’s kept the crowd going with today’s hottest songs, while Kent Jones performed popular radio tune, “Don't Mind.” Thirty minutes to an hour later, the R&B singer, soon to be the newest cast member on “Love and Hip Hop: Hollywood” graced the stage with dancers, belting out memorable singles, “I Should Have Cheated,” “Love,” “Give Me More,” and “Let It Go,” as well as new song, “You,” featuring Remy Ma and French Montana. Rocking the crowd, the soulful singer wasn’t all about the music. Cole, known for being transparent about her personal life, told the audience how happy she was that her estranged father was there. She slowed down the atmosphere with a duet with her son, Daniel Hiram Gibson Jr. for the song, “Heaven Sent”. Cole, who is going on her seventh album, “11:11 Reset,” was thrilled about the love L.A. showed her at the BETX ’17.


The 2017 BET Experience: BETX ‘17 was a musical affair for celebrities, musicians and fans.

Category: Arts & Culture